Half a billion WhatsApp users potentially exposed to spam and scams

Last up to date: November twenty fourth, 2022 at 16:04 UTC+01:00

A database containing the telephone numbers of one-quarter of all WhatsApp users was just lately put up on the market on a hacking group discussion board. The vendor claims that the database was current and contained 487 million telephone numbers belonging to lively WhatsApp users in 84 international locations.

WhatsApp has a consumer base of round 2 billion, which signifies that this database supposedly incorporates the telephone numbers of one-quarter of WhatsApp users. According to the poster, the database incorporates the telephone numbers of over 32 million users within the USA, 45 million from Egypt, 35 million from Italy, 29 million from Saudi Arabia, 20 million (every) from France and Turkey, 10 million telephone numbers from Russian users, and over 11 million UK numbers.

One-quarter of lively WhatsApp users are potentially exposed to spam and phishing makes an attempt

The supply (by way of Cybernews) didn’t reveal how they obtained half a billion telephone numbers of lively WhatsApp users however mentioned that they “used their technique.” Nevertheless, it’s potential that the database was put collectively by means of a course of referred to as “scraping,” which entails information gathering from web sites. In different phrases, WhatsApp wasn’t hacked, however these dangerous actors might have gathered almost 500 million telephone numbers from internet pages, confirmed that they’re used for WhatsApp, and put them up on the market.

Such a database may very well be used for spam, phishing makes an attempt, and different such actions. And there’s actually no means of discovering out in case your telephone quantity is in that database. But if you need to maintain your WhatsApp profile image and standing secure from potential prying eyes who might have gotten a maintain of your telephone quantity, you possibly can open the app, go to “Settings,” adopted by “Privacy,” and change settings similar to “Last seen and on-line,” “Profile photograph,” and “About” to “Contacts solely.”

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